China protests U.S. warship as trade talks start

07 January, 2019, 19:25 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • President Donald Trump speaks in the Rose Garden of the White

U.S. and Chinese negotiators on Monday held their first face-to-face talks since the world's two largest economies agreed to a truce aimed at resolving their trade dispute.

A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, Lu Kang, said American and Chinese envoys will have "positive and constructive discussions" during meetings Monday and Tuesday.

China says it is ready to buy more USA goods, but it is resisting U.S. demands for tougher action on technology transfers, and less state support for strategic industries like robotics and computer chips.

President Trump has said he is ready to impose tariffs on the remaining $267bn (£209bn) of annual Chinese exports to the United States if the two sides fail to agree on a deal within the 90-day truce period.

China has made "stern representations" to the United States after an American destroyer sailed through waters claimed by Beijing in the disputed South China Sea.

Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish will lead the delegation that will meet with Chinese counterparts starting Monday.

"I really believe they want to make a deal".

In his New Year address, Mr. Xi said despite the slowdown the Chinese economy stayed within a reasonable range in 2018.

The US and its allies periodically send planes and warships through the area, which is claimed by China, to signal to Beijing their right under global law to pass through the waters.


Financial markets were being lifted early on Monday on expectations that the direct negotiations would lead to an easing in tensions between the two sides.

Trump imposed import tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese goods to pressure Beijing to change its practices on issues ranging from industrial subsidies to hacking.

The trade clash reflects American anxiety about China's rise as a potential competitor in telecommunications and other technology.

"We have a massive trade negotiation going on with China". Lighthizer is deeply skeptical of Beijing and has warned Trump that the USA may need to exert more pressure through "additional tariffs" to win "true" concessions, The New York Times has reported.

"China's economy is significantly slowing down, and the USA stock market is declining quickly".

During that 90-day period, agreements "may not be reached until the last day", said Tu Xinquan, director of the China Institute for World Trade Organization Studies at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing.

But observers fear the time constraints and substantial range of prickly issues, including those Beijing considers core to its development, will make it hard to reach a deal. "I think the two sides need some kind of agreement for now", Tu said.

Chinese growth fell to a post-global crisis low of 6.5 percent in the quarter ending in September.

So far demand for Australian commodities has held up (and will benefit from a fresh bout of stimulus-inspired infrastructure investment) but a full-scale trade war would have much more severe impacts on a global economy which is over-leveraged and already slowing and an Australian economy which (at the household level at least) is over-leveraged and also appears to be slowing. -Chinese relations. They say Beijing's goal probably is to show enough progress to persuade Trump to extend his deadline.

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